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Letter from theSeries Editor - Pg. vii

vii Letter from theSeries Editor My original goal for this Game Development series was that it be the one-stop authority for all things game related. This Game Development Business and Legal Guide fills out the series with what will undoubtedly become the definitive work in the areas of business law and finance for game devel- opment, new media, and technological intellectual property in general. My initial desire for this book came from my experiences running software companies myself and knowing that when it comes to legal and business issues you want to learn as little as possible from experience! I would rather read about how to properly protect myself contractually than find out in court! This is a book that both a game developer (or related new media developer) and lawyer (or related fields) can read, feeling comfortable with both the legal and business aspects that inevitably crop up with intellectual property such as games and other digital art forms. As a businessperson there are only three things you ever need to worry about: 1. 2. 3. Liability Taxation Liability! Liability is directly related to legal issues, and knowing how to protect yourself is the best defense against litigation and other unpleasant events that you will find yourself partaking in if you ever do get involved in the management or founding of a game development or related company. What we set out to do with Game Development Business and Legal Guide was walk you through all the different aspects of game development (from both development and business points of view). Then we examine each aspect from a legal standpoint and keep you involved with the kinds of issues you should be aware of. For example, you want to start a game company? Great! What kind of entity should you select? C-corporation, sub-chapter S, LLC (limited liability), or maybe a partnership? What about a sole proprietorship? Wait a minute--what about taxes? Bank accounts? Liability? Investors? Stock options? The confusing list goes on and on. All right, great, you have a company. Now you want to license an engine; what does that mean? Can you modify it? What's it going to cost? Is it worth it? What if you make your own engine? Can you protect it? If you are a lawyer, knowing the pitfalls in digital new media and IP that your clients will stumble on will help you better direct them and make the best use of their legal budgets.